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The 2015 Super Bowl commercial winners

 

On Sunday, February 1, 2015, in real time, a panel of Kellogg MBA students evaluated the Super Bowl XLIX advertisements against rigorous, business-focused criteria to determine which ads are the most effective in building the brand. Here are the final results, including an analysis of the clear winners and the also-rans. Comment below to tell us which commercials were your favorite, as well as which ones missed the mark.

 

 

2015 Results:

 

Grade A

Always (P&G)

P&G ran an unusual spot for the Always brand. The ad featured interviews with adults and kids about the phrase “like a girl” and asked people to consider why “like a girl” isn't positive. The ad, which also featured a longer version posted earlier on You Tube, broke through the Super Bowl clutter. It was exceptionally distinctive and engaging. This pulled people in. Despite the limited and late branding the spot worked.

 

Budweiser

AB InBev ran three very strong spots this year.

 

The Budweiser Clydesdale spot was a classic. The ad told a sweet story about a puppy and his relationship with the horses. As in the past, branding, linkage and distinction were all strong.

 

Budweiser also ran an ad attacking craft beers, mocking aspects such as their fruity flavors. This is classic defensive strategy, which takes ample finesse to pull off, but Bud presented a credible message.

 

Bud Light send another unsuspecting fellow on a remarkable trip in this year’s “up for whatever” spot. The ad was also marked by clear branding.

AB InBev knows how to create great Super Bowl ads, especially when it comes to the art of making sure the branding comes across.

 

Clash of Clans

It isn’t easy to advertise a video game on TV. Clash of Clans pulled it off with a terrific spot featuring Liam Neeson. The ad captured his fascination with the game and did it in an engaging fashion. The positioning also really came through.

 

Coca-Cola

Coke did a terrific job connecting its brand promise of happiness with a significant issue in the world: negative on-line comments. The spot had exceptionally strong branding, built upon earlier campaigns on happiness, and broke through the clutter on the Super Bowl.

 

McDonald's

McDonalds has struggled in recent years, but this year the brand delivered a very strong spot. The ad, featuring a promotion that let people to pay with love instead of cash, was heart-warming. Brand linkage was particularly strong; it was impossible to miss that this was an ad for McDonalds.

 

Fixing McDonalds is more difficult than creating a strong Super Bowl spot but this is a good first step.

 

FIAT


Grade B

Avocados from Mexico

BMW

Discover

Dodge

Doritos

Dove Men+Care

Kia

Mercedes-Benz

Microsoft

Mophie

Skittles

T-Mobile

TurboTax

Victoria's Secret

Wix


Grade C

Carnival

Ecuador

Esurance

Game of War: Fire Age

GoDaddy

Jeep

JUBLIA

Loctite

Nationwide

NO MORE

REDD's Apple Ale

Sprint

Snickers

Toyota

WeatherTech

Weight Watchers


Grade D

GEICO

Nissan

Skechers

Lexus

Heroes Charge


Grade F

Squarespace


Visit Kellogg for the complete list and results